Perry's Index to the Aesopica
Fables exist in many versions; here is one version in English:
THE MONKEY ELECTED KING OF THE ANIMALS
At an assembly of the dumb beasts, the monkey did a dance. The performance was
a great success and the animals elected the monkey to be their king. But the
fox was jealous of the monkey, so when she saw some meat lying in a trap, she
led the monkey there and told him that she had found a treasure. The fox explained
that she had not taken it for herself because of the king's prerogative. Instead,
she had guarded this royal prize just for him. She then told the monkey to go
ahead and take it. The monkey recklessly put his hand in the trap and was caught.
When he accused the fox of luring him into an ambush, the fox replied, 'O you
monkey! How can you rule over the dumb beasts when you yourself are such an
The story shows that the same is true for people who take up some business
without thinking about it first: they meet with disaster and become laughing-stocks
Aesop's Fables. A new translation by Laura
Oxford University Press (World's Classics): Oxford, 2002.
cover, with new ISBN, published in 2008; contents of book unchanged.
Perry 81: Gibbs (Oxford) 24 [English]
Perry 81: L'Estrange 115 [English]
Perry 81: Townsend 68 [English]
Perry 81: Chambry 38 [Greek]
You can find a compilation of Perry's index to the Aesopica in the gigantic appendix to his
edition of Babrius and Phaedrus for the Loeb Classical Library
(Harvard University Press: Cambridge, 1965). This book is an absolute must for anyone interested
in the Aesopic fable tradition. Invaluable.